Date: March 5, 2007
Contact: Fergus Cullen, Chairman New Hampshire Republican Party
U.S. Reps Paul Hodes and Carol Shea-Porter voted with labor union bosses and against workers and business owners last week when both supported HR 800, the so-called “card check” bill.
The bill, a top priority of organized labor, takes away the secret ballot fromworkers deciding whether or not to form a union. It would require the National Labor Relations Board to certify a union if a majority of workers sign cards naming the union as their bargaining representative – a process often accompanied by intimidation.
“New Hampshire believes in the secret ballot, but labor unions believe in intimidation, forcing workers to sign cards in front of union organizers in view of pro-union colleagues. This obviously makes it harder for individual workers to vote their conscience. At town meeting in coming weeks, New Hampshire voters will elect local officials and decide warrant articles through secret ballot, free of intimidation of this kind, and workers should be able to decide whether to unionize in the same way,” said Fergus Cullen, chairman of the NewHampshire Republican Party.
During his last campaign, Congressman Paul Hodes received $176,550 from labor unions. Rep. Carol Shea-Porter infamously received support from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard’s Metal Trades union and its boss, Paul O’Connor, in a move many Republicans considered a stab in the back for then-Rep. Jeb Bradley, who had worked tirelessly to preserve the shipyard.
“This bill is payback, pure and simple,” Cullen said. The bill was opposed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
MORE CONTEXT: “HR 800 would offer an easier road to union organization. It would allow organizers to bypass secret-ballot elections and instead get a majority of employees to sign cards supporting a union, a so-called card check. With this alone the NLRB could certify the union. Under current law, employees can sign cards showing their support for a union, but employers can insist upon a vote by secret ballot as well.” (Rebecca Kimitch and Michael Sandler, “HR800,” CQ BillAnalysis , 110thCongress, Accessed February28, 2007; “HR 800,” CQBillTrack , 110th Congress, Accessed February 28, 2007)